Henry Omunu, Abuja
The House of Representatives on Thursday resolved to investigate the deplorable condition of the Aso Rock Clinic, Abuja, in spite of N10.83billion allocation it received in 2015′ 2016 and 2017.
The lawmakers’ decision was sequel to the recent disclosures by the Wife of the President, Mrs. Aisha Buhari, who condemned the clinic for lack of basic drugs.
Also, the House further resolved to look into the deductions allegedly made from the salaries and allowances of staff of the clinic.
The resolution follows the adoption a motion brought by Hon. Henry Archibong (PDP/Akwa-Ibom) drawing attention to the poor state of medical facilities at the clinic and the services it renders to patients.
The Daily Times recalls that Mrs. Buhari had at the opening of a two-day stakeholders meeting on reproductive, maternal, adolescent health and nutrition held at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa last Monday, chided the Chief Medical Director of the State House Clinic, Dr. Husain Munir, over the poor state of the clinic.
She revealed at the forum that when she recently took ill, the management of the clinic advised her to seek medical attention in London, an advise she turned down.
Upon preferring to use the State House Clinic, she found out that the x-ray machine at the clinic was dysfunctional.
Leading debate on the motion, Rep. Archibong observed that the State House Clinic was established to take care of the health needs of the President, the Vice-President, their family members as well as members of staff of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said that the clinic has over the years, been receiving annual budgetary allocations to procure equipment that will enable it function optimally.
Giving details of budgetary allocations for the clinic, the lawmaker added that in the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Appropriation Acts, the clinic was allocated the sums of ₦3.94 billion, ₦3.87 billion and ₦3.2 billion respectively, for upgrading and provision of necessary drugs and equipment.
“In spite of those huge budgetary allocations, the clinic lacks necessary facilities such as syringes, drugs and equipment needed for saving lives.
“Medical doctors working at the clinic have expressed concern over alleged illegal deductions from their salaries and allowances by the management since April 2017, without any official communication for the action”, he said.
Furthermore, the lawmaker commended the first lady for her exemplary show of patriotism and selflessness in exposing the rot at the clinic and insisting on obtaining medical care in Nigeria.
Her action, he said saved the country millions of dollars in foreign exchange.
The probe will be conducted by the House Committee on Healthcare Services and has three weeks to report its findings for further legislative action.